Saturday, October 14, 2006

To hold on or to let go

For many years I coped with my moods and psychotic episodes by working like crazy to hang on, trying not to lose my sanity, trying to survive. I clung as a young child might cling with her hands onto high horizontal bars in a playground, knowing that letting go might mean falling to the ground and hurting herself. This hanging on caused a lot of fear. And this fear only made me sicker. I tried to do it all on my own. But often I broke...and I fell...and I hurt myself.

There came a time when I did not feel I could hold on any longer. The struggle was just too difficult. "What about this God I learned about in Sunday School?" I thought. "Wouldn't it be something if what I was taught about him was actually true? What about if the faith I had turned away from as a teen could actually help me? Wouldn't it be wonderful if I didn't need to bear this suffering on my own anymore? What if God could help make my life easier?"

I decided to explore the Christian faith I was brought up with but had rejected. I began to look for God.

Amazingly, though, I had to learn everything my teachers and parents had taught me about Jesus from scratch. It was as though I didn't know anything at all. For the first time in my life - at the age of 42 - I was open to hearing, and open to understanding, the truth about following Christ. I was still stubborn, though. It still took a while for me to swallow my pride and go to church. Instead, I went to the public library to find books about God.

But what the Bible says is true: Jesus said, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." (Matthew 7:7)

I asked, and sought, and knocked, and I found out what I had been missing. Gradually, I learned what it meant to have faith. I've learned to trust him to catch me when I fall. Now when I go through bad times, I can let go and trust God to take care of me. I've learned how great his love is. I now know he loves me, no matter what. I have found a Source of comfort and peace. (I have to confess, though, that there are still terribly difficult times. But I have a faith I cling to, knowing God will always be there.)

Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."


steve g said...

I am drawn to respond to you because we share a few common coincidences. I went to a bad car prang yesterday{Im a firey} involving a lady.
My dad had bipolar and I have struggled all my life to fit in. I became a christian 20 years ago.
My daughter was diag. BP 7 years ago. My other daughter is a professional photographer.

Sarah said...

i can relate to that story a lot. i used to be that girl too. only when i came to the end of myself I found God.

You're a person I look up to Marja, I hope to get where you are, one day.

In the future I wanna help people with Bipolar through support groups within the church. too idealistic? maybe but we'll get there

i dunno when i'm going to Prairie but I applied to go in September 07. Lots of things need to happen before though (i.e me getting scholarships:P)

But if it's God's will (and i sure hope it is!) it'll happen:)

Dobro said...


Tracy said...

It is amazing what will happen when a person opens up and really hears the words of the Lord. Faith is a wonderful thing. I am so very happy that Jesus is leading you through all your days.

Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

I think I will take this and post it all over the place, so I remember that all I need to do is to come to Jesus, and he will give me rest.


marja said...

Thank you, numnum, sarah, mysti and Dobro.

And sarah, you wanting to start a support group of your own is not at all idealistic. As you grow in your Christian walk, amazing things will be possible. My faith has taken me to a life I could, in the past, never have imagined.

Work hard with your doctors to stay well, ok?

May God be with you in everything you do. I hope you get those scholarships so that you can go to Prairie.

Anonymous said...

My Husband's Grandma sent me that scripture in hard times....about ten years ago. I keep it pinned to my desk.